("Listen, Jacare, those hotel carpets are usually covered in…you know what, forget it.")
Strikeforce Houston is set to blast off this Saturday and your old pal Gambling Addiction Enabler has just one question: Could you loan us a few bucks until payday? Seriously, man, we’ve got some can’t-miss fight picks cookin’, and we swear it won’t be like last time. Thanks, bro. For real, you won’t regret this. Would it be cool if we used your shower?
The available betting lines, courtesy of bestfightodds.com:
Muhammed "King Mo" Lawal (-376) vs. Rafael Cavalcante (+375)
Ronaldo Souza (-255) vs. Tim Kennedy (+215)
KJ Noons (-205) vs. Jorge Gurgel (+205)
Bobby Lashley (-500) vs. Chad Griggs (+370)
Daniel Cormier (-1350) vs. Jason Riley (+700)*
Andre Galvao (-280) vs. Jorge Patino (+240)**
* The Cormier/Riley and Galvao/Patino prelim fights will both be streamed live on Sherdog before the Showtime broadcast.
** Jorge Patino is a late replacement for Nate Moore, who has dropped out of the event due to injury. Please make your Fightpicker changes as necessary.
The Main Event: A bet on Cavalcante would nearly quadruple your money — and that’s still not enough to change our opinion that King Mo is world class, while Feijao isn’t quite there yet. We still haven’t seen Feijao tested by an elite-level wrestler; we saw him get knocked out by Mike Kyle last year, and that wasn’t too encouraging. Meanwhile, Lawal has shown that he can comfortably switch his gameplan from heavy-handed standup to tenacious wrestling and top control, depending on his opponents’ weaknesses. You know we love a good upset, but we’re staying away from this one.
The Good ‘Dog: Jacare vs. Kennedy feels more like a pick-’em to us, so if you’re offering 2-1 underdog odds on Tim, we’re taking it. The oddsmakers seem to think that Jacare’s grappling will win the day, but Kennedy has shown that his submission skills can be just as formidable, and he’s never been tapped. Plus, he arguably holds the advantages in striking and wrestling. If Kennedy can avoid the one thing that Jacare does really well, he’s got this.
The Favorite: As I said on Friday’s podcast, Noons should be able to pick apart Gurgel to a decision. If KJ’s line was any higher I wouldn’t suggest putting straight money on him, but this feels like a solid investment.
The Squash Matches: Damn, those are some big-ass numbers for Cormier and Lashley. And while I think both of their lines have been inflated by hype, they’re strong favorites for good reason. Yes, Griggs is a legitimate test for Lashley, and Cormier’s schedule has been grueling, but I’d still be comfortable sticking both of these fights in a parlay.
Suggested Wagering Breakdown, Based on a Hypothetical $50 Stake:
$10 on Kennedy
$20 on Noons
$20 on Lawal+Lashley+Cormier parlay